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Who was Saint Apollonia ?
Saint Apollonia was born in the third century and lived in Alexandria, Egypt. She was a deaconess of the church there.
In 249, during the festivities commemorative of the first millenary of the Roman Empire, the agitation of the heathen
populace rose to a great height, and when one of their poets prophesied a calamity, they committed bloody
outrages on the Christians whom the authorities
made no effort to protect. Bishof Dionysius of
Alexandria relates the sufferings of his people
in a letter addressed to Fabius, Bishop of Antioch.
At that time Apollonia was held in high esteem.
These men seized her also and by repeated blows
broke all her teeth. They then erected outside the
citygates a pile of fagots and threatened to burn her
alive if she refused to repeat a blasphemy aginst
Christ. Given, at her own request, a little freedom,
she sprang quickly into the fire and was burned to
Although she quitted life in this wise, nevertheless
she received high honour as martyr in the Catholic
Apollonia is the patroness of dentistry and
protectress against toothache.
Jean Fouquet, The martyrdom of Saint Apollonia 1452 - 1460
Musťe Condť, Chantilly
National Gallery of Art in Washington